Wells RNLI lifeguards and lifeboat station team up for joint training exercise
RNLI lifeguards and Wells RNLI lifeboat station came together for a combined training exercise at Wells-next-the-Sea Beach on Thursday 20 July.
RNLI Seasonal Senior Lifeguard Oliver Holden, Grade 2 Lifeguard Harvey Riggot and inshore lifeboat (ILB) Helm James Betteridge, participated in the evening training exercise that offered both local lifeguards and the lifeboat crew a chance to practice their collaborative rescue skills.
The lifeguards learned about the capabilities of the D class Peter Wilcox with the inshore lifeboat crew at Wells Lifeboat Station, including Simon Parkes, James Parr and Ed Burton.
They exercised the D class in the channel just off the beach and concentrated on the best way for RNLI lifeguards to transport a casualty from their rescue boards and rescue tubes up to the ILB.
Martin Emerson, Wells RNLI Lifeboat Station Mechanic, said: ‘I believe the two teams found that the best to transfer casualties was for the lifeguard to sit on the rear end of the rescue board, which raised the front enough for the ILB crew to pull the board onto the boat horizontally, so the board was resting across the sponsons.
‘They thought this to be especially valuable if there was a spinal case as this negated any unnecessary movement of the casualty from the board.’
Harvey Riggot, RNLI lifeguard at Wells-next-the-Sea, added: ‘It was really great to train alongside the lifeboat crew, we learnt a lot about the ILB.
‘We went through various methods of casualty transfers from our rescue boards onto the lifeboat to refine our techniques and find the safest and quickest way of doing it.
‘Thank you to Wells lifeboat station for letting us get involved, it has been extremely beneficial to our local lifeguard service and hopefully will lead to future training exercises where we can work on perfecting more skills together as one crew.’
The charity’s lifeguards pride themselves in being as fit and prepared as possible to keep beach users safe.
Oliver Holden, RNLI Seasonal Senior Lifeguard, said: ‘We always recommend that members of the public swim at a lifeguarded beach between the red and yellow flags.
‘If you find yourself in trouble in the water, remember to Float to Live:
Tilt your head back with your ears submerged
Try to relax
Control your breathing
Use your hands to help you stay afloat
Once calm, then try to call for help or swim to safety if you can.’
In a coastal emergency, call 999 or 112 for the Coastguard.’
For beach safety information and tips, please visit: https://rnli.org/safety/beach-safety
You can see the RNLI lifeboat crew and lifeguards working together during Wells lifeboat station’s open days on Wednesday 2 August, Sunday 13 August, and Sunday 24 September (this could be subject to change due to operational needs).
On Sunday 13 August there will also be an evening lifeboat service at 5pm.
Notes to editors
To find out more about Wells RNLI lifeboat station: https://rnli.org/find-my-nearest/lifeboat-stations/wells-lifeboat-station.
RNLI lifeguards are currently operating on the following East of England beaches seven-days-a-week between 10am and 6pm:
Here is a link to a video demonstrating the Float to Live technique: https://source.rnli.org.uk/share/8D368494-1288-427B-9579B05FD5568D3F/?viewType=grid.
For further information please see: www.rnli.org/safety/float.
RNLI picture caption
Photograph 1 shows Wells inshore lifeboat crew training with Wells RNLI lifeguards. Photo credit: Ray West.
Photograph 2 shows Wells RNLI lifeguards practicing casualty transfers with Wells inshore lifeboat crew. Photo credit: Ray West.
Photograph 3 shows RNLI Wells inshore lifeboat crew and a RNLI lifeguard. Photo credit: Ray West.
Photograph 4 shows RNLI lifeguards and inshore lifeboat crew on the D class Peter Wilcox. Photo credit: Ray West.
Photograph 5 shows Wells inshore lifeboat crew training with Wells RNLI lifeguards. Photo credit: Ray West.
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The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.
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